REVIEW COMING SOON: Beyond Sensory Experience "Modern Day Diabolists" CD/DVD

•June 3, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Beyond Sensory Experience “Modern Day Diabolists” CD/DVD (46th Cycle) by Cyclic Law

No, neither this blog nor Stereo Ate My Last Tape is dead or retired. Due to a number of reasons, both personal and otherwise (including increasing/decreasing activity of my netlabel Argali Records), these blogs have remained dormant since roughly July of last year.

However, with the upcoming compilation on the Argali netlabel hopefully arriving in July, I am also hoping to devote more time to music reviews. Starting with the new Beyond Sensory Experience album “Modern Day Diabolists”.

Expect all these things and more…soon…

Now accepting submissions for the “Time Will Pass” compilation on Argali Records Netlabel!

•April 28, 2012 • 2 Comments

THIS COMPILATION HAS NOW BEEN RELEASED. SPECIAL THANKS TO ALL WHO CONTRIBUTED. FURTHER COMPILATIONS FORTHCOMING? STAY TUNED. 🙂

 

ARGALI RECORDS NETLABEL PRESENTS
“TIME WILL PASS”

Argali Records Netlabel is now accepting submissions for the “Time Will Pass” compilation. For this project, we are mainly looking for experimental electronica, avant-garde music, industrial, IDM/glitch and similar sub-strains of these genres. However, we are not limiting submissions to these directions. When in doubt, send in a song and we will tell you what we think. If you need examples about what we are all about, feel free to not only check out our releases on Argali, but also the work of our allied netlabel friends at Timetheory, Clinical Archives, Treetrunk, etc.

Submission Guidelines: We are looking for songs/compositions/soundsculptures ranging from one to ten minutes in length. One song per band/musician, please. Preferably either unreleased and/or new material when possible. Usually we accept .MP3 or .WAV format files, although we are now accepting FLAC submissions as well. IMPORTANT: Sound files MUST be AT LEAST 128kbps .mp3 format or higher/comparable, 192kbps or higher greatly preferred. Argali Records Netlabel (via John Lithium’s “Lithium Industries” Soundcloud site) has a DropBox one can use to submit tracks. Alternatively, one can use YouSendIt to send the track to chandlern@gmail.com. These methods are the preferred methods for getting your music to us. If you’d like to utilize a different way, get in touch either through WordPress or email and I’ll see what we can do.

Currently there is no concrete deadline for when submissions can be submitted. For the sake of this text, a tentative date of July 1st has been set, although this may be changed if needed. Though this will most likely will not be an issue, Argali Records reserves the right to reject any submission for any reason (when in doubt, ask…we don’t bite). IMPORTANT: When you submit your song, please be sure to clearly label your file with your project/song name. If you have a site/Soundcloud/etc, feel free to include that as well. We will be including an ‘band/musician’ list in the linear notes and/or graphic design of the finished project.

Pictures/Art: We are also accepting graphics/art submissions for this compilation as well. Augment your auditory experience with a visual component! In terms of what we will NOT accept, see above (basically no overly graphic/political material etc), but in terms of what we WILL accept we are basically saying almost anything goes here (especially since this is the first time the graphic design of the release was not either handled in house or by one specific individual). While Argali releases graphics usually are around 1500×1500 or 3000×1500 (basically ‘cd booklet/cover’ format), we will accept smaller or larger images (as long as it’s larger than a thumbnail and smaller than a two-bedroom apartment). Images can be sent to the email listed above, the same basic rules apply (clearly label the file, etc).

Conceptual Food For Thought: Note that these are not set in stone concepts attached to this project, but instead represents a sleep-deprived stream-of-consciousness rush of ideas meant to stimulate creativity and inspiration. Feel free to follow or deviate from these ideas as you see fit: The title and theme of this compilation is “Time Will Pass”, a phrase I chose for both being intentionally vague and conceptually rich: the permeability of time, the constant flow of time, the impermanence of individual events, and yet how they maintain an ever-present reverberation into the entire fabric of reality (and possibly others). In addition, we live in troubled times in which the actual fabric of time itself seems to be accelerating. Is this a permanent trend? How often have you heard someone or a group of people claim that things will get better ‘once we get over this rough patch’ and similar self assurances? Could it be that 2012 is the cosmological fork in the road, in which time either accelerates out of control, or stop entirely? Will the veil be lifted or will the shroud be lowered? Is despair or hope ahead?

IF YOU HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS/COMMENTS/CONCERNS/ETC, FEEL FREE TO EMAIL ME AT: chandlern@gmail.com. Thank you again for your continued support and encouragement. 🙂

Worst-Case Scenarios Compilation (Intelligent Machinery & Lithium Industries)

•January 7, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Original link at Intelligent Machinery here.

Intelligent Machinery (John Ingram) and Lithium Industries (John Lithium) are now accepting submissions for the ‘Worst-Case Scenarios’ compilation, featuring the Lithium Toolbox. The Lithium Toolbox is a series of soundscape tools – sound concepts – that have been offered up for free to the world at large, for subversion and subduction. A collection of “nightmares, dreams, hallucinations and worst-case scenarios” to use in your own sonic adventures. Tracks submitted for this compilation must include at least one sound file from the Lithium Toolbox: twisted, mangled, abused and/or misused in any way you see fit.

Go here for more information about the Lithium Toolbox, here to preview and download tracks from the Lithium Toolbox, and here for any questions regarding submissions etc.

Doomsday Compilation

•January 7, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Download it here. Featuring tracks by December Nightskies, John Lithium, skin contact, The Silence Bureau, silent frill, COMPACTOR, Jonny Ether, Controlled Dissonance, Raven, Mystified, somnaphon, Necron, Deccan Traps, Plastic Love Tool, Third I, ‘O Tempora, O Musicae vs SDS’, Death Mother, Bob Tavis, and Axelrod Nemoy (any musician links to the projects listed above would be greatly appreciated).

“Doomsday. The apocalypse. End times. Judgment Day.

Every culture has its own eschatology; its own vision of the end of the world. Doomsday is a compilation project to assemble tracks themed around this cataclysmic concept – noise, dark ambient, abstract sounds that reflect upon, relish in, admonish against or in some way celebrate your vision of eschatology.

When the day of reckoning is upon us, let it not be said that we were ill-prepared to provide its soundtrack.”

KK Null : Cryptozoon (01-05)

•December 7, 2011 • Leave a Comment

KK NULL / CRYPTOZOON 01 (first 03:15 excerpt) by KK NULL / NUX ORG KK NULL / CRYPTOZOON 02 (excerpt 21:01 – 24:31) by KK NULL / NUX ORG KK NULL / CRYPTOZOON 03 (excerpt 20:30 – 25:35) by KK NULL / NUX ORG KK NULL / CRYPTOZOON 04 (excerpt 00:00-05:30) by KK NULL / NUX ORG

KK NULL / CRYPTOZOON 05 (00:00 – 05:55) by KK NULL / NUX ORG

KK Null sums up the basics of these singles/EPs rather succinctly on his website: “Collaborating with Chris Watson on the album “Number One” (TONE-24, Touch, UK) in 2005 caused me deep interest in “field recording” and made me to explore the sound of nature for the following years and until now. The field recordings used on “CRYPTOZOON” were recorded at various locations in Australia, Canada, Europe and Japan between 2006 and 2010 recorded by myself with a handy wav recorder.”

“However, don’t get this wrong : “CRYPTOZOON” is NOT a simple field recording album at all. I used the sound of nature as one of the materials and processed them and synthesized with electronic sound to create this unique electro-acoustic compositions.”

““CRYPTOZOON” is brutal, cosmic and intense as well as my previous works, but maybe a bit more organic and earthy. Several years experience in the bush and forest inspired my creativity and gave new color and timbre on my music.” 

This collection of recordings is most likely one of the most diverse you will find in the noise genre. Only it really is not very accurate to call the Cryptozoon albums strictly ‘noise albums’, given the wide range of genres he presents, often within a very short time period. Granted, many segments are often quite noisy, but, in a similar manner to Guilty Connector’s “Beats, Noise, And Life” record, percussive elements, moments of near-silence, and what could possibly be termed ‘pseudo-techno’ (if the phrase does not exist yet, then I am creating it for the purposes of this review) often make their presence known.

As he mentioned, field recordings are one of the main focal points of the album, and while they appear on a very frequent basis, they never feel omnipresent or intrusive in terms of the overall composition of the song/segments (in many instances, they have been extremely manipulated, so that it is sometimes difficult to determine what is a skewered field recording and what is a purely digital construction). Instead (as the macro photography of the albums seems to suggest) the recordings offer the listener a glimpse into the inner mechanics and processes of nature.

While this might not be the best introduction to KK Null’s solo work and is almost certainly not the best record in his extensive discography, it is nevertheless a very compelling study of cosmic experimental avant-garde noise electronica, one which easily elevates it above the mundane (and often sonically boring) reaches of his contemporaries. You can order these albums through the KK Null website, which will re-direct you to the distributor of your choice: Boomkat, Amazon.com, and iTunes in the future (also note that iTunes has several other KK Null albums available).

Ocrilim : Annwn

•November 30, 2011 • Leave a Comment

This music will test your understanding of what ‘music’ actually is. With a run time of seventy-nine minutes and only seven tracks (no track is under seven minutes long and the longest runs for a punishing fifteen minutes), Annwn subjects the listeners to vast expanses of cyclical riff formations, formed from a bass guitar and two leads. Oddly enough, despite the extremely hypnotic levels of repetition involved, there is also a large amount of variation involved as well, more so as the album progresses. Even so, this album has a reputation of alienating all but the most determined music fans, and to be completely honest, I feel that the reputation is not entirely undeserved. Yet I am also strongly convinced that much of the negative reactions are knee-jerk responses from the same sort of people who criticize musique concrete, ambient, noise, free jazz, and other ‘non-conformist’/’non-traditional’ genres. Either that, or there simply are too many people out there who cannot conceptualize ‘music’ outside the ‘classics’ and those spawned in a major-label ‘hit making’ factory for instant consumption and maximized profits. But if you have the patience, this album is a fascinating study in swiftly evolving guitar soundscapes. You will be amazed at how time itself seems to alter, especially if you listen to the album in it’s entirety. In short: Anwnn is epic.

Pete Swanson : Man With Potential

•November 27, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Pete Swanson – Man With Potential by _type

For some reason, I am having a lot of difficulty in making up my mind whether or not this review is ‘good enough’ or substantial enough to be written for the Music For The Rest Of Us blog. However, this album does take advantage of Soundcloud in that the entire album can be streamed for free. So at the very least you have nothing to lose in checking the album out.

If you are looking for an post-Yellow Swans album from Pete Swanson that not only presents deconstructed techno industrial noise worship but also invites lofty comparisons from music distributors and journalists (Aphex Twin, Regis, Prurient, Kevin Drumm and Vatican Shadow are among some the projects mentioned), then you are in luck: “Man With Potential” is here to fill that desire.

While this album is quite a bit different from Swanson’s earlier solo albums (which focused more on pseudo-freeform guitar soundscapes), it also evokes elements of a few of the early Yellow Swans releases (many of which were produced in extremely limited quantities). Most of the compositions feature a persistent rhythm and/or beat, although the sonic focus is shifted significantly on each track. The heavily promoted “Misery Beat” is most likely to invoke comparisons to ‘traditional techno’, including Aphex Twin, while more abrasive pieces like “A&Ox0” and the fantastic title track bring to mind, perhaps, mid-to-late era Prurient and Swanson’s involvement in Yellow Swans.

Though it is easy to endlessly name-drop musicians/bands in order to better describe this album, it is also important to remember that Pete Swanson is slowly but surely carving his own niche in a drastically overcrowded market (both in terms of what is now being termed ‘damaged electronica’ and music in general). “Man With Potential” might be a self-ironic/self-deprecating reflection, which is consistent with Swanson’s enigmatic aesthetic, but it is also completely accurate, and should he continue to release consistently high quality albums, prophetic as well.

Type Records
Boomkat
Pete Swanson (Discogs)

UR : Kulturvultur 7" & Secret Chiefs 3: Saptarshi / Radar 7"

•November 21, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Both tracks are good, but the second one is simply phenomenal. As a friend of mine pointed out, there are some serious Neu! vibes emanating from it. In this world of ruin and turmoil, an upbeat instrumental rock song is always welcome.

Web Of Mimicry also recently started a download store (via Bandcamp) and have made their recent Saptarshi / Radar available for download. If you can, check it out, for (like nearly all Secret Chiefs 3 related material), it is really, really, really good.

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma : Shining Skull Breath

•November 12, 2011 • Leave a Comment

To be completely honest, I am somewhat conflicted regarding my opinions on this album. While it is true that “Shining Skull Breath” is a blissful journey into the realm of hazily distorted drones and textures, it also suffers from the same problem that a lot of bands in this genre suffers from: a crippling lack of identity. Of course, my opinion of this stems from the fact that I discovered bands like Yellow Swans, Tim Hecker, Birchville Cat Motel and others before this one, whereas people who were familiar with Jefre Cantu-Ledesma, Fennesz, Emeralds, and others might have the exact same thing to say about the former bands.

Then again, apparently this guy has several different active projects, so maybe this work is not fully representative of his overall presentation. Furthermore, this was originally released in 2007 in a very limited edition, so perhaps his music might have change dramatically since then. Yet despite several listens, I still feel unable to really ‘warm up’ to the music in general.

Perhaps it is best to say that there is an over-saturation of drone bands with this type of aesthetic on the market, and to be fair I also have inadvertently contributed to this influx on occasion). I believe all of these bands have validity, but it is really hard to say whether any of them are ESSENTIAL listens or not. In any event, if you are a huge fan of any of the bands listed above, you will probably enjoy this album, but if you (as I am beginning to) feel that the genre is getting vaguely overcrowded and a little stale, this album probably will not do much to change your opinion of the situation.


Jefre Cantu-Ledesma

Students Of Decay Label

Reigns : The Widow Blades

•November 11, 2011 • Leave a Comment

This is one of those albums that, having bought the album on a whim, with no previous knowledge of the band, find that I had inadvertently stumbled upon a true gem. Although I have only owned it for a short period of time, I firmly believe this is one of the best indie/post-rock/alternative albums I’ve heard in years.

Despite being a huge proponent of this particular album, I must admit that I still know relatively little about the band or their past work. Most of their albums seem to be conceptually similar to their most current one, with themes of gloom, dread, and isolation recurrent. Also this album seems to veer closer to indie/post-rock, whereas their previous efforts apparently had either more of a ‘folk direction’ and some compositions which were much more electronic in nature (there are still many keyboards and synthetic elements to this album as well, but they are usually integrated more subtly in the songs). Which is why having “The Diagram” presented as one of the promotional songs is both appropriate and a little puzzling, given the fact that much of the album does not sound very similar to that song.

One of the greatest strengths of the album are the vocals. Mostly sung in a deadpan monotone, we are delivered darkly tragic narratives concerning the (possibly fictitious, in the grand tradition of great storytellers) tale of “Millicent Blades: a middle-aged widow who had disappeared during the blizzard of 1978, vanishing somewhere between the villages of Tup’s Fold and Tone Gulley. Nothing was found of her save a set of interrupted footprints and a pile of clothes – all turned inside out.” As frequently mentioned in other reviews, the lyrical content of the album is far from pleasant or happy, especially the ‘cure is worse than the disease’ metaphors found in Hybrium Sulphate and the ‘after the blackout’ morning after story of ‘I Will Burn For This’.

There have been a lot of favorable comparisons associated with this album, including Nick Cave (in my opinion especially Murder Ballads, given that it too featured winter imagery and themes of intoxication, confusion, and murder), Scott Walker, Bon Iver, and even (in my opinion) echoes of Ian Curtis and Robert Smith.

An album this awesome does not come around very often. Do yourself a favor and pick it up today.

Reigns official website
Monotreme Records